The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Friday, September 19, 2014


News of: Monday, 14th of December, 2009

Front Page

Trial by next Feb

The process of the much-awaited trial of the war criminals would start by February, said Law Minister Shafique Ahmed on the eve of the 38th Martyred Intellectuals Day yesterday.

BNP brings 12 more in standing body

BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia last night announced the partial national executive committee and an expanded standing committee of her party with many new faces.

Unified curriculum for primary edn

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday said her government has initiated a process to introduce a unified curriculum for kindergartens, madrasas and primary education institutions to establish a common education standard.

River grabbing still going on

Encroachment, earth-filling and building of illegal structures continue at different points of Buriganga, Turag, and Balu rivers defying the High Court directives, says a government report.

Legally binding deal not in sight

It is now almost certain that the two year-long demand of Bangladesh and small island nations for a legally binding agreement will not be met in Copenhagen as the time has already run out with lots of other issues unresolved.

India dethrone Maldives

Goalkeeper Arindam Bhattacharja made two saves in the shootout as a young India side regained regional supremacy by beating Maldives 3-1 in the tie-breaker in the final of the Bangabandhu Sixth SAFF Championship at the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday.

Nurse hiring to start finally

After six years of virtual embargo, the health ministry is finally sending a proposal to the cabinet today for appointment of 2,639 senior staff nurses against equal number of vacant posts in public hospitals.

Lower courts face judge shortage

Judicial work is being greatly hampered as the government has not yet filled up the vacant posts of over 400 lower court judges.

HC to get 1,057 'crossfire' record

Over 1,000 people have been killed in law enforcers' custody in the names of "crossfire", "encounter" or "gunfight" in violation of human rights since formation of Rapid Action Battalion in 2004, the country's two leading human rights organisations said yesterday.

3 govt offices ransacked now in Natore

In mysterious incidents of a series of heists, criminals ransacked three more government offices in Natore early yesterday, just a day after similar incidents of robberies at two other public offices in Rajshahi.

JS body slates ACC boss for declaring Matin clean

A parliamentary sub-committee yesterday criticised Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) chairman for declaring former adviser MA Matin 'clean man' in awarding the container-handling job at Chittagong Port, contrary to a probe report.

Martyred Intellectuals' Day today

The nation today pays tribute to the martyred intellectuals amid increasing demand for trial of war criminals who systematically killed the country's prominent intellectuals and professionals on this day at the fag end of the 1971 Liberation War.

PM picked for Indira Gandhi Gold Plaque

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has been selected to be conferred the Indira Gandhi Gold Plaque 2009 for significant contribution towards human progress.

Rebels shot dead after surrender

Sri Lankan troops shot dead surrendering Tamil Tiger leaders on the orders of the defence secretary, the former army chief who is now running for president said yesterday.

Tremor jolts Ctg region

A mild earthquake, measuring 5.1 on the Richter scale, jolted the port city Chittagong and Bandarban last night.

WB pledges help in battle of climate

The World Bank (WB) has assured its cooperation and assistance for Bangladesh in infrastructure development and socioeconomic uplift of the country as well as facing the challenges of global climate change.

Cyclone turns into deep depression

Cyclonic storm Ward hovering over the Bay of Bengal has weakened slightly and turned into a deep depression.

Jailbreak frees 31 prisoners in Philippines

Scores of suspected Islamic militants knocked down a concrete wall and barged into a jail in the volatile southern Philippines yesterday, freeing 31 inmates in a nighttime attack that sparked a gunbattle in which two people were killed, officials said.

225 MPs will oppose Andhra division

Congress MP from Vijayawada L Rajagopal said Sunday that 225 Andhra Pradesh legislators would oppose the resolution to bifurcate the state for Telangana if the motion is put to vote in the state assembly.

Editorial

Martyred Intellectuals' Day

It is that time of year when we recall the sacrifices of millions of our fellow citizens in the War of Liberation in 1971. Today, it is especially significant that we recall yet once more the brave men and women --- academics, journalists, writers, doctors, et cetera --- who were picked up by the infamous al-Badr and Razakar goon squads and done to death on the eve of the liberation of Bangladesh. Those who died at the hands of the collaborators of the Pakistan occupation army, obviously with the nod of the army, were like the rest of us individuals who awaited the arrival of freedom with huge anticipation and a multitude of expectations. And those who murdered them thought, in all the darkness that conspiracy can muster, that by picking these men and women off they would be maiming the new, emerging nation at birth. Nothing could be more satisfying for a soon to be defeated force than plunging its already bloodied teeth one last time in the vigour and vitality of oncoming freedom.

Protection of consumers' rights

The enactment by of the Consumer Rights Protection act 2009, to safeguard the interest of the consumers was very timely and welcome step. For too long the consumers in Bangladesh were helpless victims of the service providers who, in spite of the well established norms of providing the best value for the good purchased , did not measure up to the standard. And there was precious little that the consumer could do and had very little scope to have their grievances redressed.

BNP: A shot in the arm?

Till the BNP's just concluded cou-ncil the party had indeed been in an existential problem. Badly battered in last general election, the BNP was hardly in a position to convene its council although there was an Election Commission (EC) imposed compulsion to hold the party council within the stipulated time to be registered with the Commission. Amid widespread factional feud in the party, resulting at times in intra-party clashes and bloodletting all over the country, BNP was dragging its feet for months only to put its house in order and bring the fast fading party into some shape so that it could be existent in public view.

Remembering our shaheed intellectuals

Every year, the great victory month is observed in remembrance of the last 16 days of the liberation war when our valiant freedom fighters staged a strike back with sophisticated weapons, flushing out the occupation army and their collaborators from many parts of the country.

Sports

Young India defy odds

With only ten days of preparation and a young side, India defied the odds to regain the supremacy in South Asian football by beating Maldives a 3-1 in the final of the Sixth SAFF Championship last night. Thanks to the superior gameplan of a master tactician and the brilliant performances from a goalkeeper, India got past the hurdle to lift the coveted trophy for the fourth time.

Siddons wary of changes

Bangladesh coach Jamie Siddons welcomed the return of some ICL players to the national fold but it seemed that the Australian was hardly interested to make any major changes to the team which have won numerous games in the last few months.

Kalabagan down CCS

Rokibul Hasan and Javed Omar guided Kalabagan to an 84-run victory against Cricket Coaching School (CCS) in the Premier Division Cricket Super League match at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium yesterday.

Dhoni calls for improvement

India may have squared the series with a record chase but MS Dhoni has said the team will have to pull up their socks before they can claim to be a quality Twenty20 side. India's successful chase of a target of 207, the highest successful chase in this format, snapped a four-game losing streak but their bowling and fielding left much to be desired.

Pakistan fight back

Pakistan openers Imran Farhat and Salman Butt fired a century partnership to keep their series hopes alive in the third Test against New Zealand.

Smith warns Pietersen

Graeme Smith, the South African captain, has warned Kevin Pietersen he faces a hostile reception when the first Test begins at Centurion on Wednesday.

V'Day cricket

Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) announced teams for the Victory Day cricket match between Shaheed Jewel XI and Shaheed Mushtaque XI which will take place at the Dhanmondi Cricket Stadium on December 16.

Surjo Torun crush Partex

A 104-run opening partnership between Imtiaz Hossain and Zunaed Siddiqui helped Surjo Torun to secure a seven-wicket victory against Partex in the relegation match of the Premier Cricket League at BKSP yesterday.

Atlante into semis

Atlante breezed past Auckland City and into a semifinal meeting with Barcelona at the FIFA Club World Cup with a comfortable win on Saturday.

Local chess

I2 Soft Solution snapped the unbeaten run of Titas Club but still they maintained their solo lead in the Dutch-Bangla Bank First Division Chess League.

Ancelotti not worried

Carlo Ancelotti insisted Chelsea's Premier League title challenge remains in robust health ahead of the busy festive period despite their sloppy 3-3 draw with Everton.

Chelsea keep lead

Chelsea extended their lead at the top of the English Premier League table despite a 3-3 draw with Everton on Saturday after champions Manchester United suffered a shock 1-0 loss at home to Aston Villa.

Real leave it late

Real Madrid closed back to within five points of leaders Barcelona with a late 3-2 win at title rivals Valencia on Saturday with Argentine Ezequiel Garay the unlikely hero with an 83rd minute winner.

Bayern go goal crazy

Bayern Munich and Sch-alke moved firmly into the Ger-man title race on Saturday with impressive away victories.

Juve in free-fall

Dumped out of the Cham-pions League in midweek, Juventus saw their Serie A title hopes suffer a hammer blow Saturday as they slumped to a 3-1 defeat at Bari to miss a chance to go second.

'Cesc not playing for Catalonia'

Arsene Wenger will resist any attempts by Johan Cruyff to include the Arsenal captain, Cesc Fábregas, in his Catalonia representative team to play Argentina in an exhibition match at the Camp Nou later this month.

Woods buys island estate

Scandal-hit golfer Tiger Woods' wife Elin Nordegren has bought a vast beachfront estate on an island near Stockholm that can only be reached by boat, a residents' association said on Sunday.

Ntini relishes a milestone

At Centurion on Wednesday, an African icon will reach a very special milestone. When, back in March 1998, Makhaya Ntini became the first black South African to represent his country, few could have predicted that he would still be going strong more than a decade later. And yet, he now stands on the cusp of 100 Test caps, an achievement matched by only six out-and-out fast bowlers.

Tiger sends shockwaves

Tiger Woods faced more fallout from his sex scandal Sunday as stunned rivals said they looked forward to his return after an indefinite break in his golfing career and sponsors pondered their future cooperation with the billionaire athlete.

Hussey will open if needed

The under-pressure Michael Hussey will return to open if asked, but believes Shane Watson is currently the best man for the top spot. Shane Warne has joined the critics who believe Hussey is on his last legs, with him saying the batsman should have shifted places to fit Watson into the middle order.

'Diving Queen' reigns at East Asian Games

China's "Diving Queen" Guo Jingjing reigned supreme on the final day of the East Asian Games in Hong Kong on Sunday -- then said reports she had quit the sport or was about to were premature.

Anderson impresses Strauss

Andrew Strauss is confident that strike bowler James Anderson will be fit for the first Test at Centurion Park after he came through a reasonable workout during England's warm-up game in East London.

Business

World cotton prices jolt knitwear

A global surge in cotton prices has hiked local yarn prices, threatening the recovery of the recession-hit knitwear sector.

Solar power to light up BB

After allocating a Tk 200-crore low-cost revolving fund for refinancing banks' green power projects this year, the central bank will now set example for the banks by installing a solar power system at its headquarters.

Magnum makes steely entry

Competition is set to intensify among 'greater-strength' rod makers as Magnum Steel Industries Ltd has entered the scene to tap growing demand for 500-grade steel in real estate and construction.

80 register for London road show

A total of 55 foreign power companies and financiers, industry-related contractors, LNG terminal manufacturers, and 25 non-resident Bangladeshis registered online until yesterday for participating in a London road show.

JS body suggests revival of food ration for RMG workers

A parliamentary body yesterday asked the authorities to revive food rationing for garment workers and continue it throughout the year.

Metro Spinning plans for 'slab yarn' production

Metro Spinning, a concern of Maksons Group, plans to import 20 slab yarn machines from India in two phases to produce specialised yarn, as part of the company's effort to diversify products.

Muhith unhappy over PPP project execution pace

Finance Minister AMA Muhith yesterday expressed his dissatisfaction at the slow pace in implementation of public private partnership (PPP) projects and blamed the previous BNP government for shattering the economy.

Deal next week to import palm oil through TCB

Commerce Minister Faruk Khan has said an agreement with Malaysian government will be signed soon to import palm oil through the state-run Trading Corporation of Bangladesh (TCB) to bring stability in the domestic edible oil market.

MCCI calls for Thai lead in Bimstec growth

Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI) yesterday urged a Thai business delegation to take the lead role in speeding up the country's activities in Bimstec to bolster regional growth.

Utilise tax break on CSR spend

A workshop in Dhaka yesterday suggested Bangladeshi entrepreneurs utilise a ten percent tax exemption offered by the National Board of Revenue on CSR expenditure.

Domestic demand key driver

Domestic demand is still the largest contributor to real GDP (gross domestic product) growth in most of the BRIC and N-11 countries, according to a research.

Indian telecom crowded by new entrants

Stein-Erik Vellan, head of Norway's Uninor, the newest Indian mobile phone operator, insists his company will be one of the survivors in what has rapidly become a very crowded market.

Business info centre demanded for Sylhet

Speakers at a dialogue yesterday demanded setting-up of a business information centre at the city corporation, a separate market for women and a special economic zone in Sylhet.

Dubai stocks maintain profits

The Dubai stock market strengthened on Sunday, building on a 7.0 surge it made before its weekend on Thursday, lifted by property giant Emaar's decision to abandon a merger with state-owned entities.

US senate to vote on $1.1 trillion spending bill

Senate Democrats overcame a Republican filibuster to clear the way for a vote Sunday on a huge end-of-year $1.1 trillion spending bill that includes money to run much of the government and pay for Medicare and Medicaid benefits.

Kuwait to spend $87b on oil projects

Kuwaiti Oil Minister Sheikh Ahmad Abdullah al-Sabah said on Sunday the emirate plans to spend 25 billion dinars (87 billion dollars) on oil projects until 2030.

British bank chief admits 'mistakes' on bonuses

A top British banker said "mistakes were made" within the industry as bank employees racked up huge bonuses, in an interview with The Sunday Telegraph newspaper.

Japan, US reach 'open skies' deal

Japan and the United States late Friday reached an "open skies" deal removing restrictions on the number of flights between the world's two largest economies, the US side said.

Corporate Briefs Corporate Briefs

GRAMEEN MUTUAL FUND ONE
On the close of operation on December 10, the fund declared NAV of Tk 45.90 per unit at current market price and Tk 25.84 at cost price against Tk 10 in face value whereas the fund's net assets stood at Tk 78.03 crore.

Metropolitan

Over 52pc children of poor families economically active

Over 52 percent children of extremely poor families are economically active, which is higher than the national average, reveals a study.

Actions of an Australian speak louder at Charfashion

Inspiration is power, which is instilled from one person to another for beauty of someone's personality or actions. Lutfey Siddiqi is one of such a person who was highly stirred by selfless work of Australian national Fred Hyde, who has been tirelessly working to educate children in remote island Charfashion in Bhola.

Effective utilisation of climate funds stressed

Bangladesh has got wider global attention but needs to work out ways to ensure effective utilisation of climate change funds.

'Form probe agency for war crimes trial'

Cultural activists yesterday demanded the government form a separate investigation agency within this month in order to start the trial of war criminals but the government, however, is not sure whether it would be set this month.

11 killed in road accidents

Eleven people were killed and 35 others injured in separate road accidents in Mymensingh, Bogra and Netrakona yesterday.

'March 7 speech one of greatest speeches ever delivered'

Speakers at a discussion yesterday hailed the historic March 7 speech of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman as one of the greatest speeches ever delivered.

Police to restore old monogram, change uniform

Bangladesh Police will restore its old monogram before the 'Police Week' to be observed in first week of January and change the colour as well as design of its uniform later.

3 exempted from personal appearance

The High Court yesterday exempted Deputy Commissioner of Dhaka Zillar Rahman, Inspector General (Prisons) Brig Gen Ashraful Islam Khan and Jailer of Dhaka Central Jail Mokhlesur Rahman from personal appearance before this court in a contempt of court charge.

Hearing on charge framing Jan 7

A Dhaka court yesterday fixed January 7, 2010 for hearing on charge framing against BNP Joint Secretary General Gayeswar Chandra Roy in a case of extortion and concealing wealth information from the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC).

Consequences of climate change discussed

The visiting former president of the Maldives Mamoon Abdul Gayoom and Speaker of Maldives Parliament Abdullah Shahid paid a courtesy call on Prime Minister Sheikh

'Introduce early warning system for tornado'

Speakers at an international forum yesterday underscored the need to introduce early warning system for tornado to reduce the damage.

Hasina visionary leader of LDCs

Nobel laureate scientist of Taiwan Prof Yuan Tseh Lee met Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at her office yesterday and highly praised her leadership during the discussion with her.

JS library to collect books

The Jatiya Sangsad 'Library Committee' yesterday reviewed the report of the parliamentary sub-committee, which focused on collecting new books for the library.

Call to review vested property return bill

Speakers at a roundtable yesterday called on the government to review the proposed Vested Property Return (Amendment) Bill 2009 before placing it in parliament for enactment.

Probe body report in 2 days

The committee formed to probe the violence in a garment factory in Tongi and the subsequent killings has completed investigation and is set to submit report in a day or two, Labour Secretary Ataharul Islam, the head of the five-member committee, told The Daily Star yesterday.

Police ready to prevent Ulfa activities: IGP

The home minister yesterday said the law and order is now better than in any other times in the past, while the inspector general of police spelt out adequate preparations of his forces to prevent any subversive acts of the United Liberation Front of Assam (Ulfa).

5 martyred FFs' death anniversary

Today is the 38th death anniversary of four martyred brothers -- Bakhtiar Hasan Makhan, Kamrul Hasan Ratan, Rakibul Islam Lucky and Iqbal Hasan Shahar -- and their relative martyred Ataur Rahman Khan Nehal, says a press release.

Decentralise admin to ease pressure on city

Speakers at a roundtable yesterday said decentralisation of the activities of 19 ministries and their 52 administrative offices from Dhaka city along with the industrial zones and employment generating sectors is a must to ease out pressure on the 400-year-old capital city.

14 shanties gutted

Some 14 shanties were gutted in a fire that broke out in a house at Balurmath of Ibrahimnagar in the city's Kamrangirchar yesterday.

Programmes of Martyred Intellectuals Day

Different socio-cultural and political organisations have chalked out elaborate programmes to observe the Martyred Intellectuals Day today.

'Ensure electricity for rural people'

The government should ensure electricity for rural people to materialise the dream of 'Digital Bangladesh', speakers said at a report launching ceremony yesterday.

'Allocate more fund for education'

Campaign for Good Governance at a view exchange meeting yesterday called on the government to allocate more money for education sector as well as for strong monitoring to ensure quality education.

Seminar on improving public services

A seminar on 'Improving public services through total quality management' was held at Sheraton Hotel in the city on Saturday, says a press release.

TIB signs MoU with DU dept

Department of Mass Communication and Journalism of Dhaka University and Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to build capacity of journalists on investigative reporting, says a press release.

Contraband drugs seized in city

Directorate of Drug Administration (DDA) seized unregistered and contraband drugs wroth around Tk 40,000 from different parts in the city yesterday.

Milad mahfil

A milad mahfil will be held in memory of Shaheed Ghyasuddin Ahmad, a martyred intellectual, at 4/3 Lalmatia, Block # E, in the city after Maghrib prayers today, says a press release.

National

Foundation laid 10 years ago, no fund yet for memorial

Today is the 38th death anniversary of Birshreshtha Captain Mohiuddin Jahangir.

RU recalls martyrdom of three teachers today

Observing the Martyred Intellectuals Day today, Rajshahi University (RU) will commemorate the sacrifices of three RU teachers who borrowed martyrdom during the Liberation War.

Khulna finally to have memorial

Construction work on an independence memorial at Gallamari in Khulna City under the supervision of Khulna Zila Parishad finally began on December 1.

'I want to see war criminals tried before my death'

Valiant freedom fighter Taramon Bibi Bir Protik has said freedom fighters will continue to suffer disgrace until war criminals are tried.

Pabna has no memorabilia of its great son Rabbi

People from all walks of life in Pabna have demanded preservation of the memorabilia of martyred intellectual Dr Fazle Rabbi and naming Pabna Medical College after him in recognition to his supreme sacrifice for the country's independence.

Dense fog disrupts ferry services

Ferry services on Paturia-Daulatdia route remained suspended for 11 hours yesterday and on Mawa Kaurakandi route for 13 hours on Saturday due to dense fog.

Amend insulting provision in UP law 2009

The central leaders of Bangladesh Union Parishad Forum (BUPF) at a meeting here yesterday demanded amendment to a provision in Union Parishad Law 2009, which they said was against the spirit of empowering the local government body.

Armed robbers loot houses

Robbers looted house of an expatriate in Sylhet early Thursday and looted two more in Keraniganj and Madaripur on Saturday.

UP chairman held for 'kidnapping' member

Police yesterday arrested Chairman of Charbaghdanga Union Parishad (UP) and two others from Puraton Bazar in the town on charge of kidnapping a UP member of the same union.

Student strike at Ctg vet university continues

Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) and General Students Parishad continued class boycott at Chittagong Veterinary and Animal Sciences University (CVASU) for the second day yesterday.

Class boycott at BL College, clash at Rangpur medical

Students of Khulna BL college went on indefinite class boycott yesterday while 20 students were injured in a clash at Rangpur Medical College (RMC) on Sunday.

Letters

CNGs & traffic control

My wife and I (total age: 140 years) being a be-car couple usually do our rare visiting/shopping either by walking, rickshaw or CNG. Over the last two weeks, my wife's CNG has twice been accosted by a traffic cop who then grills both the driver and passenger with questions like “Where are you coming from and going, are you going by meter or paying extra?” as if the CNG drivers are the only ones making a little hay in the Bangladeshi sunshine! From long experience, and so as not to get embroiled in a three-sided altercation, my wife gives the driver a clean bill of health and is allowed to proceed. This is Stupidity No 1 will any passenger wish to be deprived of the services of a rare CNG after a long wait on the road?

Save nature

It is an irony that our Honourable Prime Minister is raising her voice against climate change and its adverse affects on people, and at the same time some people(according to newspaper report they are blessed with both the ruling party and the opposition support) are cutting down trees mercilessly in the coastal areas. Now it is not unknown to anyone that due to climate change we are suffering from recurrent flood, crop damage, cyclone etc. Moreover, due to the climate change we cannot produce food for our people. I would, therefore, request our PM to take the right steps to save our environment and save ourselves.

Scourge of climate change

International climate summit is going on in Copenhagen. Bangladesh as well as other developing and poor countries look forward to good initiatives from the summit. But may be we are going to be disappointed. The developed countries never agree with the objection that they are increasing greenhouse gases more than the poor countries. Their inattention brings various negative impacts of climate change particularly on poor countries. Climate change is increasing food insecurity, poverty and development. A recent report from FAO proves the above statement.

Amateurish governance

The 10-month old popular regime is too much in a hurry to become more popular; but it cannot change gear beyond the first or second stage. Basic policy changes are being introduced in a hurry, without providing enough time for public debates. The parliament is one-eyed, with no opposition; and many of the ministers are new, buffeted by a lot of extra Advisors.

Help the disabled

Bangladesh observed in a befitting manner the International Day of Persons with Disabilities on 3 December 2009. There was a programme on the International Day at United Nations Headquarters, New York. “Creating the MDGs Inclusive: Empowerment of people with disabilities and their communities around the world” is the theme of this year's International Day for Persons with Disabilities, as well as for the 61st anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Zee's 'Choti Bahu'

Does caste identity really matter? The Zee TV serial 'Choti Bahu'currently on show reflects a grim image of a caste sensitive grandmother. The main theme of the serial goes like this Dev deeply loves Radhika and so is Radhika in true love with Dev. Although Radhika was brought up in priest Shastriji's family, yet in reality she wasn't their own daughter. Radhika was actually found by Shastriji in abandoned condition at the gate of the temple and adopted her. Everyone in the family had accepted Radhika as their own blood relation except the grandma who could never accept her as their own. She used to hate Radhika as her caste identity was unknown. The grandma considered Radhika as if she was from a lower caste. She would never take food or water from Radhika's hand as Radhika was untouchable. If sometimes she comes in touch with Radhika she would take a bath immediately to get purified.

Automobile revolution!

The green car has arrived! It heralds the end of the era of the gas guzzlers merrily polluting our environment for the past decades, as reported in your pages on December 4. It logically follows Wahid Khan's write up on "muscle cars" in the "Rising Star" on 3 December! The linkage between automobile's past and future, published by you on successive days is coincidentally remarkable, to say the least!

Maldives and Nepal show the way

Two members of Saarc have set world record by arranging their respective country's ministerial summit under deep sea and at the top of Mount Everest respectively. They have done it as an awareness campaign on global warming. To arrange this unique and unparallel programme under the sea and at the top of Mount Everest they took long preparation to brave nature's wrath during the summit attended by their ministers who are obviously aged persons.

Armed forces

I commend The Daily Star: Internet Edition for the front page coverage about the 38th Bangladesh Armed Forces Day observed on November 21, 2009.

Why this price increase?

The other day I went to a pharmacy to buy a 114 ml bottle of Milk of Magnesia. The price printed on the bottle is Tk.13.14, and I had purchased it for that price just a week ago. Now the pharmacy demanded Tk.30.00 for it! However, I went to a couple of pharmacies to double-check and all of them said the pharmaceutical company had increased the price without changing the label. What type of trading is this?

Drivers

The DMP Commissioner AKM Shahidul Haque recently revealed to journalists that "Over 70 percent drivers of the public vehicles carry fake licences in the capital and they are the most irresponsible and inefficient." Twenty-eight road accidents on an average occur in the capital every day. Fake licence holders mainly run most of the human haulers and minibuses on different routes in the capital. For the ongoing drive the following may be considered.

While mosquitoes bite….

We are facing the mosquito menace for the last couple of weeks. The number of cases of dengue fever and its deadlier form has increased considerably in the city. If you take statistics from the diagnostic labs, you can easily see the worsening situation in Dhaka. The DCC administration seems to be asleep. People have got apathy. The media is busy with BNP's internal clashes on the eve of its conference. Who will care for us? It seems that the mayor is not getting the BNP nomination for the upcoming mayoral election, so he just remains insensitive to mosquitoes.

Taliban in Pakistan

After the Taliban slaughtered scores of Pakistanis in a Rawalpindi mosque on Friday, Dec. 4, Lahore's Daily Times editorialised on De. 6: "Pakistanis have become almost resigned to the daily fate of suicide bombing and other attacks by the barbaric terrorists who pretend to speak in the name of Islam. But even an almost inured populace could be forgiven its shock and horror at the suicide attack on a mosque in Rawalpindi.”

International

Gilani backtracks on end of offensive

Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani said Saturday the country's army had driven the Taliban out of South Waziristan, a key battleground in the fight against Islamist insurgents.

Pakistan must pressure Afghan Taliban

US General David Petraeus said yesterday that Pakistan needs to put pressure on the leadership of Afghan Taliban operating inside its borders if long-term progress is to be made in Afghanistan.

Indo-Pak forces trade fire along border

Indian and Pakistani border guards yesterday exchanged gunfire in Jammu and Kashmir after Pakistani forces tried to push Islamist militants into India, official sources said.

Myanmar junta chief's future still uncertain

As Myanmar gears up for rare elections due next year, eyes are turning to the fate of the country's ageing military strongman, Than Shwe, and a possible succession, exiled activists say.

Britain vows renewed effort to rout Taliban

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown vowed a renewed effort to defeat the Taliban insurgency, hailing the next months as critical while meeting troops in Afghanistan yesterday.

Lanka war refugees face uneasy homecoming

Three years ago, Vairamuttu Bavani left her home in eastern Sri Lanka to attend her cousin's wedding in the north.

Philippine gunmen set free all 47 hostages

Tribal gunmen in the southern Philippines yesterday released 47 hostages they had been holding for three days, after authorities agreed not to arrest them and animals were sacrificed.

Thousands march for tough climate action

Tens of thousands of activists demanding a planet-saving climate deal blazed a path to the door of the UN talks on Saturday in a raucous, festive rally that was also marked by sporadic violence and more than 960 arrests.

'I give nicer gifts than I get', says Obama

The White House may be bedecked with baubles and awash with Christmas cheer, but its most famous resident appears a tad disgruntled with Santa.

Low energy bulb can help save the planet

British scientists have developed a new bulb that looks just like old-style bulbs but consumes less energy.

Kremlin cites progress on weapons treaty

Russia and the United States are making "substantial progress" on negotiations for a successor to an expired nuclear weapons treaty, according to a Kremlin statement.

Blair will be quizzed over Iraq war in public

Britain's Iraq war inquiry said yesterday that former prime minister Tony Blair would be questioned "very much in public" amid fears that crucial evidence would only be heard in private.

Scientists harness vitamin E to fight cancer

Scientists from University of Strathclyde have devised a novel way to harness natural vitamin E extract that would kill tumours within 10 days.

India tests nuclear-capable missile

India successfully tested a nuclear-capable ballistic missile from a ship near the east coast yesterday, a defence official said.

Pak woman, 20, shamefully auctioned

In a shameful and bizarre incident, a 20 year old girl was sold in an open auction for 2,70,000 rupees in Badani Bhutto village here.

Arts & Entertainment

A versatile figure

Chhayanaut organised a memorial meeting to pay homage to the noted agricultural scientist and photographer Dr. Nowazesh Ahmed on December 12 at the Ramesh Chandra Dutt Memorial Auditorium of Chhayanaut Sangskriti Bhaban.

“Britter Bairey” does Bangladesh proud

Bangladeshi director Golam Rabbani Biplob's second feature film 'Britter Bairey' shared the best film award with a Kazakhstan movie at the 8th Third Eye Asian Film Festival in Mumbai.

Celebrating the spirit of Christmas

On December 12, thirty five churches got together to celebrate Christmas at the Shishu Academy. The Christmas Festival 2009 was organised by Incarnation.

Victory Fair begins in Pabna

A weeklong Victory Fair (Bijoy Mela) began on Saturday at the Pabna Town Hall premises. An inaugural programme was held on December 12. A colourful Victory Rally was brought out on the occasion. Chief guest, State Minister for Home, advocate Samsul Haque Tuku inaugurated the fair.

Abdul Jabbar performance moves Freedom Fighters

Noted singer Abdul Jabbar, whose spirited songs inspired Freedom Fighters as well as the nation during the Liberation War, once again moved the audience with his remarkable performance recently marking the liberation of Bochagonj from Pakistani occupation.

Nrityadhara and American Centre to join hands

A dance performance titled “Experience the Movement” is to be held at National Theatre Hall Auditorium of Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA) on January 3, 2010. Nrityadhara, a heritage based dance troupe in Bangladesh, in collaboration with the American Centre in Dhaka under the supervision of the USA Embassy in Bangladesh will jointly arrange the programme.

A dose of culture in Magura

A three-day cultural programme, featuring songs, a dose of comedy and dances was held at the Dumurshia Secondary School premises in Mohammadpur upazila. Several leading cultural personalities from Dhaka performed in the programme, which ended on December 12.

A programme for a pioneer

Recently, a discussion and cultural show were held at Jhenidah Shilpakala Academy on the occasion of Rokeya Dibash, a day earmarked for the pioneer of women's renaissance in the subcontinent.

OP-ED

Open and distance learning

THE new National Education Policy 2009 (NEP '09) includes many good features. The earlier these are implemented, and not just passed, the better. The vision of the new education policy is great and will be a means to cope up with today's fast progressing world.

Is uniform face value investor-friendly?

AS different face values "only mislead" investors, last month the consultative committee of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recommended the market regulator to set a uniform face value of stocks at Tk.10. The committee claimed that the investors often compared the prices of one stock with another although they did not have the same face value. For this, share prices, even of weak companies, often go up abnormally, ultimately upsetting the market, officials explained.

Tech-heads bypass phone bans

LUNCHING at the Hong Kong Country Club, I saw a man talking to his laptop. Nothing unusual about that. I talk to all sorts of lifeless, inanimate objects, ranging from pieces of furniture to slices of toast to university students.

Correction

The photo used for the article "Unsung heroes of our independence: Gazaria freedom fighters" published on December 13, 2009, was taken by Naib Uddin Ahmed. We regret the error.

Science & Life

CLIMATE TALKS

RAJENDRA K. Pachauri, chairman of the 'Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change' makes a point during the press conference at the UN Climate summit in Copenhagen, Dec. 12, 2009.



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